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White Clapboard House and Dory

about 1900
Arthur Wesley Dow (American, 1857–1922)


Dimensions

Sheet: 16.2 x 21.6 cm (6 3/8 x 8 1/2 in.)

Accession Number

2006.1277.237

Medium or Technique

Photograph, cyanotype

Not On View

Collections

Americas, Photography

Classifications

Photographs

A number of photographers of the Arts and Crafts period sought to create images of rural simplicity infused with poetic atmosphere. One of these was Arthur Wesley Dow, an artist best known for his prints and paintings, who found inspiration in the Japanese print collection at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, where he worked in the 1890s. In response to prints by Hiroshige, Hokusai, and others, Dow developed aesthetic principles of design that focused on the flat, formal relationships of compositions and emphasized a harmony of line, tone, and color. Through his teaching and his popular manual Composition, first published in 1899, Dow influenced American art for decades. In his experiments with photography, Dow particularly appreciated the cyanotype process for the ease with which prints could be made and for their decorative blue shade.

Provenance

By summer 1965, William Councilman Wigglesworth (b. 1918 – d. 1987), Ipswich, MA [see note 1]; summer 1965, gift of Wigglesworth to his sister-in-law, Anne Parker Wigglesworth (b. 1921 – d. 1999), Ipswich, Manchester, and New York; 1999, by inheritance to Philio Wigglesworth Cushing, Ipswich, and her son, Henry Coolidge Wigglesworth, Seattle, WA; 2006, partial gift and partial sale of Philio Wigglesworth Cushing and Henry Coolidge Wigglesworth to the MFA. (Accession date: June 21, 2006) NOTES: [1] William Councilman Wigglesworth, a surgeon in Ipswich, MA, received the album from a grateful patient at an unknown date.

Credit Line

Gift of Philio Wigglesworth Cushing and Henry Coolidge Wigglesworth from the collection of their parents Frank and Anne Wigglesworth in memory of their love for Ipswich. M. and M. Karolik Fund and Charles H. Bayley Picture and Painting Fund